With the Dog days of August in full swing, let us drift to the not so distant future and discuss the San Diego Padres offseason decisions. Today we will discuss the starting pitching offseason decisions.
This offseason could very well be the most important in the history of the franchise. Considering the depth in the organization, there will be some very hard choices being made. Between now and the start of the spring will be one of the more exciting hot stove seasons.
Trades could be made to upgrade certain positions of weakness (shortstop) by using some of that depth throughout the organization. Especially areas that are a surplus.
Those positions could include second base, third base, outfield, starting pitching and bullpen. Starting pitching you might ask? The good news is, there is lots of depth on the farm for the Friars in this particular area.
There are six pitchers alone on the AA San Antonio Missions roster who could make an impact at the major league level. Those names include Cal Quantrill, Joey Lucchesi, and Eric Lauer, all three of which were 2016 draft picks. There is also Enyel Del Los Santos, Brett Kennedy, and 2015 third round choice Jacob Nix.
All six of those names are on my personal top thirty prospects list. Add in the three on the staff at low single A Fort Wayne, Michel Baez, Adrian Morejon, and Pedro Avila and that’s almost a third of my list.
Throw in the name Chris Paddack, who will be returning from the annual Tommy John curse that plagues this franchise, the 10th pitcher on my list.
Others to consider in the minors include 2011 first round draft pick Michael Kelly (who coincidentally will be a minor league free agent at season’s end), Logan Allen who’s another top 30 prospect, as well as 2016 draft choices Mason Thompson and Reggie Lawson.
That is sixteen choices for fifteen possible starting pitching spots in the triple, double, and high single A portions of the organization. That’s just the minor league side of the available starting pitching offseason decisions.
On the major league side of that equation are players now on the major league roster as well as players returning from injury. Names like Dinelson Lamet, Luis Perdomo, and Travis Wood who are in the starting rotation now, are three all but certain candidates.
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Players returning from injury will include Robbie Erlin, Colin Rea, Christian Friedrich, Jarred Cosart, Matt Strahm, and Miguel Diaz. That is a lot of depth for a possible twenty estimated spots from high single A up through the five major league starting choices.
That does not include any possible acquisitions made by trade or free agent signings that could occur. Which is something the front office is sure to look into.
They will want at least one veteran guy to lead by example. Re-signing Jhoulys Chacin would be a perfect example of someone they would be looking at in my estimation.
Looking at the choices available, the offseason decisions the franchise will have to make will be aplenty. These decisions should have a very profound impact on not just next season but future seasons as well.